What does boxing have to do with your head and your heart? This is an allegory about the battle I was having between my head and my heart.
Unlike most of you who were busy making plans for Christmas, I was planning on all the organizing I was going to do in my office, and making plans for Hey, Boomer for the coming year. I was excited about all that I was going to get done because I was not having company for the holiday, and I had very few obligations. I could picture the clean desk I would sit down at, and it filled me with joy.
I also realized that over the past several months, I have been neglecting my connections because I have been so busy working. This realization is what led me to choose Connect as my word of the year.
This is where the “fight” started.
There is a boxing ring. The announcer begins to speak.
“In this corner is the Focused Boomer! She is dressed in the orange and tans of the Hey, Boomer brand. Her strategy is to go through folders and decide what to keep and what to let go of. Next she plans to conquer all the upstairs paperwork, writings and papers from her parents. Finally, in her corner are her accountability partners, looking for her to present the Hey, Boomer goals for next year.”
“In the other corner is the Compassionate Connector, looking nervous but secure. The strategy on this side is to prioritize family time, friend time, and new connection time. The action required is to step away from the work to make time to connect. The intention is to also connect professionally and to look for ways to collaborate. The Compassionate Connector’s sparing partner is constantly throwing in jabs of work to distract her from connecting.”
“Ladies and gentlemen, this is an epic battle between head and heart.”
“Focused Boomer is the dominant fighter in this battle today. She has a vision of where she wants to go and a strong desire to turn that vision into a reality. She also has the fortitude to stay focused. She is a planner, believing that without a plan there would be sheer chaos and overwhelm. This reliance on planning is where Focused Boomer is vulnerable, because when something disrupts/interrupts her plan, she falls into overwhelm.”
“Compassionate Connector was stronger a few years ago … before Covid. She could work a room, speak with anyone. She was President of her Rotary Club two times, where she met people regularly and enjoyed the connections. During these years, Compassionate Connector was very strong. But since Covid, she has stopped practicing. Well, not completely. Occasionally she would connect using Zoom, but over time she found that work was filling the void of lost connections. Her heart was growing weaker.”
“There’s the bell, and the opponents are moving to the center of the ring.
Connector moves in with a smile, hand out. Boomer pushes her aside and walks away as though on a mission. Connector tries to move in again, a bit more timidly. Again, Boomer barely sees her. Just keeps moving with intention around the ring. Connector begins to walk next to Boomer. She starts to sing a walking song. She just wants Boomer to slow down and notice her. It seems to be working. The pace of the walk is slowing down. Boomer looks over at Connector with some sense of recognition. Slowly, Focused Boomer realizes that at one time Compassionate Connector was a friend. They balanced each other out.”
“Ladies and gentlemen, I believe this fight is over. Focused Boomer and Compassionate Connector have agreed to provide balance for each other.
Focused Boomer knows that at times her bullying side may come out. She does not mean to hurt Compassionate Connector. Now that she is aware of this, she is going to work on appreciating what Compassionate Connector brings to the table.
And Compassionate Connector realizes that at times she can be too comfortable being by herself. She is going to work with Focused Boomer to get out more and feel the heart connections with friends and family. She will also work with Focused Boomer to do the network schmooze when it makes sense.”
I wish I could end this by saying, “they all lived happily ever after.” We all know that is not true. We will always have competing sides of our personality battling with each other. I hope when these come up for you, you can find ways to appreciate what each part of you brings to the whole.
Live with passion, live with courage and live with relevance.